In 2016, several deep sea mining events brought a common message: technology is running far ahead of regulation and scientific knowledge. And while European technology developers are pushing hard for pilot test mining, even the economic profitability of deep sea mining is still questionable.

In a welcome development the Environment Committee of the European Parliament agreed to support the inclusion of shipping in a revised EU greenhouse gas emissions trading scheme (ETS). Under the proposal shipping would be included in the ETS from 2023 if the International Maritime Organisation fails to establish a global measure by the deadline they agreed earlier this year.

Seas At Risk welcomes the adoption by the European Parliament of the deep sea regulation, which includes a ban on bottom trawling below 800 metres in EU waters and the obligation to close areas to bottom trawling below 400 metres where vulnerable marine ecosystems are present or likely to occur.

The election of Donald Trump as President of the United States of America was a bombshell that will be commented on and written about for many months and years to come. While we are still pondering what the consequences of this election will be for the world, it is becoming increasingly clear that the Trump administration will not be a proponent of stronger environmental regulation and may even try to undermine the environmental acquis in the US.

Following a three year long process the Advisory Council on Aquaculture is finally established, and can start its work on shaping European aquaculture. Seas At Risk aims to encourage the development of an environmentally responsible aquaculture sector, minimising its environmental impact.

Brussels - The EU’s Fisheries Council went on until the early morning today to agree on the North Sea and North-East Atlantic quotas for 2017. Once again Ministers failed to end overfishing. The agreed catch limits for several stocks for 2017, including cod in the Celtic Sea, Southern hake, and sole in the Bay of Biscay, are higher than the maximum sustainable yield levels recommended by scientist. This, despite Ministers’ commitments to end overfishing for all stocks by 2020 at the latest, as agreed under the Common Fisheries Policy.

London, 18 November 2016 - The annual meeting of the North East Atlantic Fisheries Commission closed today without agreement regarding management of the deep-sea fish orange roughy. The Commission also agreed on total allowable catches of 7,500 tonnes for redfish in the Irminger Sea. These decisions leave both vulnerable species subject to overfishing, despite clear scientific advice to not allow any direct fishing for them.

Brussels 15.11.2016: Seas at Risk, The DSCC and Bloom are disappointed by the decisions on fishing limits for deep-sea fish stocks taken by the Fisheries’ Council of Ministers yesterday evening. Ministers did reduce the total allowable catch for most of the deep-sea stocks but this decision will not stop overfishing. Most of the quotas are set well above the levels recommended by the scientific community to achieve sustainable fishing and will consequently allow continued overfishing of vulnerable deep-sea species.

Measures proposed by EU Member States to protect the marine environment lack ambition and financial commitment. This is the key finding of an NGO survey organised by Seas At Risk and Oceana in order to assess the level of ambition, strengths and weaknesses of themeasures Member States are proposing to implement the Marine Directive and ultimately achieve a good environmental status of European marine waters before 2020.

Joint opening statement of Seas At Risk, the Deep Sea Conservation Coalition, Oceana and WWF for the 35th North-East Atlantic Fisheries Commission (NEAFC) Annual Meeting